We had the good fortune of connecting with Kimberly Johnson and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Kimberly, can you walk us through the thought-process of starting your business?
Hmmm, There wasn’t a thought process behind starting my business, it just sort of happened. My business was very unexpected and birthed from the pain of losing a child at a young age. Sadly, my business was my life line at one point. After years of navigating grief I realized that not only did my business help me cope but it was something I became passionate about.
Ironically, my very first milestone chalkboard I created was gifted to a struggling single mom who was upset about not being able to provide her daughter the best first birthday. I remember going home and digging up all of my ideas I had planned for my daughter and in her absence I used them for this little girl! I went home and worked on this board for 5 hours and boy was it worth it after seeing this mom in tears.
It wasn’t until after this moment that I realized helping others brought healing to myself. I did another board, and another one, and soon people reached out to pay me for this service. That’s when I implemented a thought process to keep my business going…
Can you open up a bit about your work and career? We’re big fans and we’d love for our community to learn more about your work.
I am an artist, calligrapher, someone who loves to craft and make all the things! I’m most known for my First Birthday milestone chalkboards. These are chalkboards that I create with chalkmarkers that highlight the first year of a child. These boards are used as photography props, birthday party decor, or a sweet keepsake. Also, I’m a calligrapher. I use my pretty handwriting for just about anything! I make handwritten signs for weddings, I address wedding invites, and I just started customizing menu signs for different restaurants locally!
The biggest lesson I’ve learned along the way is to create lasting relationships with my customers. My services cater to birthdays, weddings, pregnancy announcements, birth announcements, etc. My customers are letting me in their lives so I want them to know that I am REALLY celebrating with them!
If you had a friend visiting you, what are some of the local spots you’d want to take them around to?
I LOVE a good brunch so you would definitely find us downtown Augusta trying to find a great brunch spot with some great drinks! I’m a true creative at heart so usually after eating downtown I like to take a walk just to spot new building murals or just to appreciate the art that downtown always seems to offer. Maybe a picnic by the river one day? A baseball game at SRP PARK? or a nice spot to walk, kayak, or go hiking.
As far the nightlife I’m not a big club person but getting dressed up and having a couple of drinks with great conversation on the rooftop bar downtown sounds like a winner to me!
The Shoutout series is all about recognizing that our success and where we are in life is at least somewhat thanks to the efforts, support, mentorship, love and encouragement of others. So is there someone that you want to dedicate your shoutout to?
My daughter, Raelyn. If it wasn’t for her I wouldn’t have this beautiful story or my business at all. My parents/family! They have always believed in me, pushed me, and supported me along the way. Lastly, a few of my friends who stayed close no matter the season I was in.
Facebook: RaeInspired Chalkboards